Director Tourism Kashmir Nisar Ahmad Wani Tuesday convened a high-powered meeting of the representatives of various Government departments and Travel Agents Association of Kashmir (TAAK) to ensure better experiences of the travellers in the Valley.
President TAAK Farooq A Kuthoo along with five member including past presidents of the association and the representatives from Srinagar Municipal Corporation, Cable Car Corporation, Department of Floriculture, Lakes and Waterway Development Authority, Chief Executive Officers of Various Tourism Development Authorities, were present in the meeting. The deputy directors and other senior officers of the tourism department were also present in the meeting.
Director Tourism Kashmir while hailing the efforts of the Travel Agents Association of Kashmir for the promotion of the tourism sector said the department will provide every kind of support to the local stakeholders for the promotion of the tourism.
He said the department is making all types of arrangements to ensure seamless experiences of the visitors so that they leave back with good memories.
TAAK urged the Cable Car Corporation to keep the surroundings at Gulmarg Gondola clean. They also sought proper heating in the waiting halls at Gulmarg base station and at Kangdoori, Hassle-free ticketing system including allowing travel agents to sell the tickets on some incentives.
TAAK also sought intervention of the authorities on the accounts of harassment meted out to a traveller by guides, Taxi Drivers, Horsemen, Sledge owners, and others. They also sought proper commissioning of the Makhdoom Cable Car and its extension to fort so that a tourist visits Makhdoom sahib, Historical Fort, Sharika Devi Temple, and then descends to visit Badam Vaari.
TAAK also sought Proper Sanitation and Solid Waste Management from Srinagar Municipal Corporation and installation of proper garbage bins at tourist places.
Maintenance of drainage and loo points, setting up on additional convenience points at tourist places and Enroute and fixing broken streetlights was also urged upon.
TAAK further highlighted the role of The Lakes and waterways Development Authority in safeguarding, conserving and looking after waterways, water bodies especially Dal Lake and Nigeen Lake.
It took strong exception to construction of toilets at Nishat Bagh. It suggested encouraging local stakeholders for introducing water-based recreational sports activities at foreshore from Nishat to Habak.
It brought to the notice of LAWDA the illegal construction on the right side of the forester road. It also urged LAWDA to maintain its STPs one at Foreshore (Habak) and at Kashmir University Corner crossing opposite the park.
TAAK members also sought maintenance, cleanliness, and repair works of the Mughal gardens.
“These gardens need a facelift before the onset of the tourist season. The toilets inside the gardens need repairs and continuous upkeep and care. The boundary walls of many gardens require repairs to safeguard them from vandalisation and encroachment. The purchase of entry tickets needs to be simplified by opening up new windows to avoid a rush.Covid protocol at the entry to gardens needs to be managed and followed strictly.”
TAAK emphasised on organising competitive Golf Championships and making their advertisements so that golfers can make plans to visit Kashmir.
TAAK also urged the SKICC Director to attract more conferences in the property.
It said operations of Light and Sound Programmes as evening entertainment is badly felt in Srinagar City.
Former President Rauf A Tramboo, Peerzada Faiyaz, Ashfaq Siddiq Dug, Vice President Habibullah Pandow and Secretary General Showket Khankashi also participated in the meet who also raised many suggestions for the smooth function of the travel trade.